Stress and anxiety disorders affect more than 18 percent of adults in the U.S. – which is roughly 40 million individuals between the ages of 18 and 54. The causes of stress vary, but several studies show that the current state and future of the nation, money and the workplace are a few of the most significant sources. A cluttered environment is another somewhat less obvious cause that can have significant impacts on your stress level.
In an environment where widespread stress and worry have become so common, it’s important to identify ways in which you can reduce stress in your everyday life. Meditation and exercise can help, as can reducing your caffeine intake and ensuring you get enough rest. Another great way to reduce stress is to eliminate clutter and get organized, both at the office and at home.
Create an organization system
Reports have found there are around 300,000 items in the average American home. Much of this is paper clutter, which can compete for your attention and affect your ability to focus and process information. Create a digital filing system and lower the chances of losing or misfiling important documents. This will also reduce unnecessary clutter which has even been shown to raise levels of the stress hormone cortisol.
Our recent survey found that a whopping 62% of respondents shared they’d often lost important documents they wish they had digitized beforehand. Scan and digitize files you’ll need for next year’s taxes, paper invoices, receipts, credit card statements and other important documents. In the office and at home, try an easy-to-use scanner like the ScanSnap iX100 which features built in OCR (optical character recognition) allowing you to add keywords and create searchable files. Consider using smartphone apps to scan important receipts when on the go. Organizing and filing documents will help you stay focused and avoid wasted time and panic when searching for the files you need.
Backup important files
Reduce anxiety and feel more secure by ensuring you have everything important backed up all in one place. If the thought of losing key files to a security or technology mishap is causing you further stress, there’s an easy solution. Utilize a cloud-based software which can help ensure you never lose files to a stolen, crashed or hacked system. Our scanners feature direct-to-cloud compatibility with versatile platforms like Google Drive, Evernote, Box and others. Cloud-based organization also means you can sort and identify files with simple keywords to find the right document or photo instantly – and forgo searching hopelessly through boxes or messy filing cabinets.
Get rid of the rest
When sorting through clutter to determine what can be organized digitally, take the opportunity to dispose of unnecessary items. You likely don’t need last October’s issue of your favorite magazine, or paper copies of bills that are available in your online account. If you have sentimental things piled up – such as your child’s artwork, school papers, or awards – preserve them digitally and let the hard copies go. The same applies to your important documents, receipts and files. Once you’ve scanned and backed them up, shred them. If you skip this step, you’ll miss out on the benefits of a true clutter-free environment.